The Layover (2017)

  • Time: 88 min
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Director: William H. Macy
  • Cast: Alexandra Daddario, Kate Upton, William H. Macy

Storyline:

Two friends on a road trip, compete for the affections of a handsome man when their flight is redirected due to a hurricane.

One review

  • Meg (Kate Upton) and Kate (Alexandra Daddario) are best friends who live together. Meg is really bad at selling beauty products and Kate is a high school teacher who might be forced to resign. When their lives become screwed up, they decide to relax and take a trip to Florida. On their plane ride to the Sunshine State, Meg and Kate encounter a pending hurricane and are diverted to St. Louis, MO. While stuck in St. Louis, they compete hard for a hunky guy (Matt Barr as Ryan) and fracture each other’s friendship in the process. That’s the central theme of The Layover, my latest review.

    By definition, a film director controls a movie’s artistic and dramatic aspects and visualizes the screenplay while guiding the technical crew and actors in the fulfillment of that vision. William H. Macy, a shining TV actor who kills it on Shameless, is “Layover’s” antonym director. As you watch The Layover, you wonder if Macy lost a bet or had pressure from the suits at Vertical Entertainment to put out an assembly line, R-rated comedy product. In jest, “Layover” has almost no cinematic innovation, a loose plot, and virtually zero character development. It runs 88 minutes, is playing in only a handful of theaters, and has been mostly demoted to release by way of the Internet. Granted, these are all bad signs. Believe that.

    Now it’s hard for me to accept that William H. Macy actually filmed The Layover. Sadly, he did and he makes a lot of mistakes in his second directorial effort. The first is casting Kate Upton in one of the lead roles and then relegating known troupers like Kal Penn and Rob Corddry to two-minute cameos. Listen, I think Upton is pretty to look at and she gets props for having the same birthplace as me (St. Joseph, MI). But let’s be real shall we. She’s not ready to carry a movie yet and her acting is borderline inept. It’s mind-boggling to think that Macy would truly approve of some of her dialogue takes. When Kate’s Meg is trying to say something sincere or trying to appear unladylike, it’s cringe- worthy as heck.

    Another mistake Macy makes is the general way in which he presents The Layover itself. There are plenty of slapstick moments, road trip instances, a ridiculous sex scene straight from the annals of Macy’s own Shameless, some bathroom humor, and the usual, sexual innuendo. These elements feel like pawns to simply keep the narrative going. Overall, the brand of funny here feels forced and familiar and that’s something William H. Macy never exhibits when brilliantly playing a sleazeball on America’s television set.

    Finally, Macy makes the big miscalculation of approving a film soundtrack that could take Muzak to a whole new level. With the exception of Human League’s 1981 ditty “Do You Want Me”, every song in The Layover could easily be featured on a Kidz Bop compilation album. Basically, we’re talking about tunes that can make your ears bleed.

    In conclusion, William H. Macy’s direction is uniformly standard. With minimal sway, Bill almost holds back on the R-rated fare and tries to wrap up “Layover” in the same sort of fashion as Kate Upton’s other flick, The Other Woman (small spoiler). Here’s the problem: The Other Woman with its notion of girl-minded revenge and guy player mentality, wasn’t that great to begin with. Bottom line: The Layover gets a one and a half star rating from me. As a moviegoer, you really need to “delay” yourself from seeing it.

    Rating: 1.5 out of 4 stars

    Check out other reviews on my blog: http://www.viewsonfilm.com

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